This book is written primarily for the man-in-the-street who wishes to have some idea of the German experiment. It may best be explained by a personal note. Most of my work for the last twenty years has been concerned with contemporary history, and I spent most of the study-leave which the University of Sydney granted me (November 1935 to March 1937) in Germany and neighbouring countries. My main aim was to sum up the New Germany without any prejudice (except that my general approach was that of a democratic individualist), and to contrast the state of affairs to-day with that which I knew in Germany at the end of the inflationary period, then at the height of the Weimar Republic's temporary success, and lastly immediately prior to Hitler's accession to power. I may have gained--or suffered-- from the detachment of view which is natural to one living in a distant Dominion.
Owing to a fortunate conjunction of circumstances, I was afforded unusual facilities in Germany. The Nazi authorities did everything possible to aid my investigations, although they knew from the outset that my attitude was one of objective criticism. Indeed, they had even filed copies of all my articles and summaries of my wireless and other talks on Germany over a period of years. Despite this, no request of mine was too much for them, and the only refusal I encountered in the whole of Germany was in being denied access to their collection of banned literature.